This month marks the 30th anniversary of Portlaoise AFC’s incredible run to the 2nd Round of the FAI Cup, the only time in the club’s history that they have made it to that competition.
On this week’s Talking Sport Podcast we have a Down Memory Lane special with three members of that team – captain Aengus Burke, John O’Loughlin and Con Dunne.
They recall how they qualified for the FAI Cup through the intermediate competition needing replay wins over Whitehall, Midland Athletic and Lusk as well as incredible 4-3 win away to Drogheda Celtic.
They then beat Home Farm 3-1 in Rosleighan Park before 4,000 turned up to watch them take on Kilkenny City in the 2nd round, a game they led 2-1 in with ten minutes to play and had two goals disallowed only to lose 3-2.
The lads look back fondly on those times under manager Christy Cahill and how they rubbed shoulders with huge figures of the Irish game like Ray Treacy, Paddy Mulligan and Brian Kerr.
Plus they describe the makeshift scaffolding and bales of straw that were needed to make Rossleighan Park suitable to host those big games and how the ground didn’t even have dressing rooms at the time, meaning they’d to tog out at the squash courts on the Ballyfin Road and then make their way to the pitch.
In a good-humoured chat with presenter Steven Miller, the lads reminisce on that glorious era for the club and how they’d love to see days like that again.